Hugi Magazine 32: Say It With Flowers

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Save Game Hacking: The Legend of Kyrandia (Written By Fable Fox)


I decided to throw this tutorial in as a bonus since 1) it's a different genre, 2) you can use the technique on a lot of games of its genre.

Word of Warning

This type of hack changes your inventory, but not the game logic setting. Depend on the game, sometimes you can bypass a section all together, sometimes certain things won't happen/work since what's supposed to be set - isn't. So if you're stuck, if the game doesn't allow you to backtrack, etc. The good news is - most of the time your inventory is the game logic. If you have this item, you probably have done that. Like Faery Tale, having a wand, crystal shard and a rose in your inventory will allow you to go straight to final level and kill master evil - just like that.

The Legend of Kyrandia

First, you start the game, go through the introduction, after you arrived at your grandfather house. Save your game.

Note that you have 10 empty slots. There's a red gem on the table. But save your game first. Remember the given name. Kyrandia is a little bit tricky.

Pick the red gem, and save your game inside on another slot. Remember the name. Make sure it's different.

Pick the red gem from the first slot and insert it into next slot. Save it as a different game slot. Remember the name. Why? Kyrandia tend to switch saves, so you don't know which's is what. It's depend on which slot you saved last. Use a hex editor or just load it into byte compare program. Since you gave different names - it will show as a differences.

Note the name at the upper right. Old save in red is game01, new in blue is game02. The differences on line 80, starting at 88 - is interesting, this is because there's 10's of FF - including the old one in red.

NOTE: If you've been reading my save game hacking tutorial, you will realize that I got it right the first time. Hunch does play a big role. Programming background also helped. But, if you see, like in this example, the data is just a few lines after the game name, and is the third differences in the file. Since the first is the save name, which is wrong, and the second, using hunch, doesn't look like it (it doesn't have 10 inventory slot pattern, and 03 to 04, which unlikely), leaves us with the third. Actually at first I didn't believe this is the location, because I thought 00 is empty. But there are 10 of FF, and there is no other differences that look as good as this. I changed it, and I was right - this is the location. As for Dune 2, it's the first - and only (AFAIR) - differences that fit our data. And as for Faery Tale, it's the first differences of 00 to 01. I just do things by the book. Make some differences. Do some compare. Look for hints. Do some changes. Watch the result. Hacking bonus point for Fallout 2 does take a few (3, or was it just one?) tries. One of the reason is that the value is a byte, second reason is that it's located near the end of the file. I look around for differences that fit the bill, change the value, and load the save game. But, yes, after you hack a lot of save games, sometimes looking at locations and the differences and you'll know which's which. But at times you will get it wrong. But don't worry, unless the differences that fit the bill is 100+, a few tries is more than enough.

Remember that for another save slot we got the red gem. So try compare game01 and game03. You will get above result. It's position 89. So I guess we just found the right location.

NOTE: You might say that if you compare game02 and game03, you will get OLD 00 new FF at 88 and old FF new 00 at 89. Yes - you are right. But the byte compare program I use didn't register this - I don't know why. Maybe it consider it as insert / delete instead of differences.

Anyway, it's time to change the data! Fire up your Hex Editor!

Since you already have item 00, and FF considered as empty, you might want to add 01 to 09 for the rest of inventory space. Remember which save slot you edit by looking at the name inside the saves.

Load the game. Boy - we were lucky. Look, I'm too busy with my book writing in order to list 00 - FE and their game counterpart. Experiment it yourself, write a list. Since you have 10 slot, you can see 10 new things everytime you load a game. Have fun. Watch for hidden item that never used in the game (I think this is that kind of game).

NOTE: I know, reading the walkthrough off the net is better for these type of games. This is not like some games where you need to kill 10 enemy to get 100 gold, and you need 100,000 gold to pay the princess's ransom. Some game developers do have a strange ways of increasing 'game length'. But it's fun nethertheless. So I might as well teach you how ;-)

NOTE: LoK, in it's day, had the best graphics and music. When we bought our 100Mhz SVGA computers, we played the CD-ROM version. The voice over, as far as I can remember, was great.

I won't elaborate much. Since for these type of games, the hacking is not that important. But if you want to brag about 'finishing the game without reading the walkthrough...' I think it's still valid ;-P

NOTE: Do you know that you can look for a location address in the .exe file for Mean Street? Not to mention the dialogues. Ahhh... Mean Street... It's the first computer game that give me dreams / nightmares - "They're in my head! They're in my head!" I mean, the digitized voice came out of PC speaker without a soundcard, and we're talking about 16 MHz PC here!

NOTE: If someone has the old DOS Monologue that if you press Alt + T it will read the text screen, can you e-mail me because I want to hear it.

NOTE: On this topic, Space Hulk will do the same thing - I remember running it on a laptop that didn't have a souncard. What did I hear? "Brother marines - the hivemind have blinded our sensors..." Awesome!

- Fable Fox,